As drink ingredients, cordials are just as important as the base liquors in the bar. If vodka, gin, whiskey, and the like are the rock stars of the cocktail, then liqueurs are the backup singers. A sweetened distilled spirit that is flavored with a variety of fruits, nuts, herbs, and spices, as well as things like chocolate and coffee, liqueurs contribute more flavour than alcohol to cocktails and mixed drinks. Cordials are made with a base liquor. It can be anything from neutral grain alcohol to brandy, whiskey, or rum. Sugar is often added along with a mix of herbs, fruits, spices, and other ingredients to obtain the desired flavour. Several liqueurs use artificial flavours and colours; this is particularly true among the cheaper brands.
A liqueur, or cordial, is a sweetened distilled spirit. Flavored with a variety of fruits, nuts, herbs, and spices, as well as things like chocolate and coffee, liqueurs contribute more flavor than alcohol to cocktails and mixed drinks
Cordial glasses are often used for liqueurs that are strong and served neat, so a small vessel size is only natural. You don't want to drink too much alcohol at a time for a variety of reasons, and limiting it to one or two ounces at a time means you have to savour what you do drink
In Australia, New Zealand, and the UK, as well as many other countries, a cordial is also known as a squash. This is a non-alcoholic drink that is very sweet and flavoured to taste like various fruits, such as lemon, strawberry, kiwi, and peach.
But, the best way to drink a cordial is straight at room temperature in sips not gulps. And don't wait for guests to enjoy a cordial. Enjoying a cordial is a civilized way to finish a meal any day of the week whether you're dining solo or with company. By the way, a bottle of liqueur is a great hostess gift.
Gradually, though, "cordial" came to denote the mixer. Cordials are popular in the UK and the Commonwealth, far less in the States. The closest American equivalent is probably Kool-Aid, a vile powder concocted in 1927 in a hideous building in Nebraska.
“Syrup is the broad-based category, and cordials are a segment of it; not all syrups are cordials, but all cordials are syrups,” says Christa Cotton of El Guapo Bitters in New Orleans. “To me, a cordial is more complex in flavor; there are more components.”
Ordinary soft drinks and cordial are high in sugar and therefore high in energy. One can of soft drink contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar! Diet soft drinks and cordials are better choices, but do contain colours, flavours and artificial sweeteners and should be taken only occasionally.2